And The Winner Is...


This is not an official announcement by some academy, guild or randomly-selected panel of "people." This is my humble opinion about which drama would win if there were such a competition.

We're in the midst of a lot of awards shows right now. Often these are frustrating to watch; because I seldom agree with the conclusions drawn, but not always. Take the Grammy Awards in 2011. I don't know who was on the panel, but they obviously understood that the Grammy Awards are MUSIC awards. It seemed like Justin Bieber's name came up as a nominee in most every category. Each time I would cringe.

But then something happened that had me on the edge of my recliner. The category was Best New Artist. The nominees were:

  • Justin Bieber
  • Drake
  • Florence + the Machine
  • Mumford & Sons
  • Esperanza Spalding

My pulse quickened: surely with four chances out of five for the judges to get this right (actually give the award to a musician) they won't mess this up. You know how when you're watching a clutch game with seconds left and it all hangs on a last second free throw or field goal. Depending on your allegiances, you try to send a subliminal spell, chanting quietly: miss (or make) it...miss (or make) it... miss (or make) it...

Well I was sending out: Esperanza, Esperanza, Esperanza. In case you're not familiar with Esperanza Spalding, she is a phenomenal musician: double bass player and jazz singer. Although I knew that as a jazz musician she had little chance, still: Esperanza, Esperanza, Esperanza...

And the winner is: ESPERANZA SPALDING!!! I couldn't believe it. My faith in awards ceremonies was renewed (for a while). I stood straight up and gave the judges a well-deserved Standing-O. My Amazing-Missus just looked at me and shook her head.

Esperanza Spalding

Esperanza Spalding

The 2011 Grammy Awards were full of great musical moments. There was a performance that celebrated the new moment for folk music along with one of the fathers of folk. Mumford & Sons, The Avett Brothers and Bob Dylan together!

Other awards that night went to real, authentic musicians: not just creations of whatever machine it is that takes young people, shapes them, molds them, auto-tunes them and spits them out as something to satisfy pop culture appetites like some real-life version of the Hunger Games.

For example:

  • Best Rock Song: Neil Young for "Angry World"
  • Best Alternative Music Album: "Brothers" – The Black Keys
  • Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals: "Imagine" – Herbie Hancock, Pink, India.Arie, Seal, Konono Nº1, Jeff Beck, & Oumou Sangaré
  • Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance: "Helter Skelter" – Paul McCartney
  • Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: "Crazy Love" – Michael Bublé

O.K. Back to my award for Best Ever TV Drama. I'm not going to reveal my pick in this post. I want to invite you to take a guess. For the first 10 to guess correctly, I will send an About POPS guitar pick. "But wait," you might be saying, "I don't play anything that needs picking."

Here's a tip: Exposing a guitar pick in your pocket when you reach for your keys or loose change can give you sort of a temporary Rock Star status. When someone sees it and says, "I didn't know you played guitar!?" You simply reply: "Oh, the stories I could tell." That's it. The rest is left to their vivid imaginations. You relish the moment with a clear conscience because you haven't said or done anything untrue.

Here's how we're going to play this game. I'm going to give you a hint about The Best TV Drama Ever. From this hint, you take a guess. You can either post your guess as a comment here or you can email it to me at

Are you ready? This is the beautiful typeface used in all of the titling on the show. Recognize the typeface--you'll know the show right away.


Good luck!